Highly distinctive and appealing Quaker samplers were made at the Westtown School in Chester County, Pennsylvania, which was founded as a Friends boarding school in 1799 and is still thriving today. For many years, female students followed practically the same curriculum as male students with the addition of needlework lessons, which were taught for two weeks of a six week period. The samplers made there included marking, extract verse, intricate geometric medallion and delicate darning examples. Threads of Useful Learning, the definitive book about Westtown School samplers, written by Mary Uhl Brooks, the long-term Westtown School archivist, will be published in December of this year; we were fortunate enough to have read an advance copy of this book and cannot praise it highly enough.
This wonderfully refined white-on-white Westtown darning sampler was made by Kezia Burrough in 1809. She stitched her name in the finest of stiches, and “Weston” for the school, usage that was interchangeable with “Westtown” until late in the 1860s, when the latter spelling was made official. Kezia was born on July 20, 1794, the eldest of six children of Joseph and Martha (Davis) Burrough, members of the Haddonfield Monthly Meeting in New Jersey. Westtown School’s archives indicate that Kezia entered the school at age 14 in 1808 and remained there until 1810. In 1817, Kezia married Benjamin M. Haines and they had three children. This sampler descended to their daughter, Martha B. Haines, whose name appears on the original backboard along with the date 1864. The family remained in southern New Jersey, members of the Evesham Monthly Meeting. Kezia died in 1857 and her husband died one year later. We have previously owned another Westtown School sampler made by this same maker, an excellent motif and medallion sampler, dated 1810.
The sampler was worked in silk on linen and is in excellent condition. It has been conservation mounted and is in its fine original mahogany frame.
|Dealer||M. Finkel & Daughter|
|Origin||Westtown School, Chester County, Pennsylvania|
|Measurements||Sampler size: 8¼” square Framed size: 10½” square|
|Inventory||View Dealer's Inventory|
|Contact||Amy Finkel, 215-627-7797 or firstname.lastname@example.org|